The Sun (London) joins The Archive | The British Newspaper Archive Blog


Hot Off The Press – New Titles This Week

This week we have added 96,038 new pages to The Archive. We have two brand new titles – the Sun (London), not to be confused with today’s tabloid publication, and the Colored News, the first British newspaper to publish colour images.

For the Sun (London), we have so far have available the years 1801 to 1868. Published daily, bar Sundays, the newspaper is a fascinating resource for the tumultuous days of the early nineteenth century, a time of great political upheaval and of course, the height of the Napoleonic wars.

The Sun (London) was initially a Tory funded publication, founded by William Pitt the Younger to combat pro-revolutionary press in 1791. It was edited by John Heriot, the Scottish journalist and writer, but changed hands numerous times, until finally ceasing publication in 1871.

Our other brand new title is very short lived Colored News. The United Kingdom’s first ever newspaper to contain coloured illustrations (and available in full glorious technicolour on The Archive), it was published for a few months in 1855.

Colored News | 1 September 1855

Our updated titles also contain some wonderful illustrations. The Lady’s Own Paper, for which we have significant updates covering the years 1847-1854, is a wonderful title aimed, of course, at Victorian women, focusing on the latest news, music, fashions, novels and ‘domestic varieties.’ It is also bursting with illustrations on a variety of themes. This week we have published the newspaper’s first ever edition, in which writer Charles Dance address the ‘Ladies of England,’ introducing the new title:

While providing, in every way which past experience and modern improvements lay open to us for your amusement and recreation, we propose to combine these, as far as possible, with instruction – to blend the useful with the agreeable.

Lady’s Own Paper | 18 October 1851

We also have updates to three of our regional titles – the Newcastle Daily Chronicle, the Cork Examiner and the Liverpool Standard and General Commercial Advertiser.

The Victorian era was a time of great change – socially and politically, but also aesthetically. Nowhere is this more evidenced than in the rebuilding of the Palace of Westminster, the design by Charles Barry and Augustus Pugin a prime example of the Gothic revival style.

The Lady’s Own Paper remarks in regard to the old House of Commons and the New Palace of Westminster – ‘old things are passing away with a greater rapidity in the present day than was ever before contemplated.’ For posterity’s sake, the publication prints a wonderful picture of the ‘last of the old House of Commons,’ of which the greater portion had already been pulled down.

Lady’s Own Paper | 18 October 1851

On 3 February 1852 the new chamber of the House of Commons was opened. The Sun (London) reports on the following day how the ‘The doors of the New House of Commons were thrown open soon after twelve o’clock.’

The article is a wonderful record of the first impressions of one of the most famous buildings in the United Kingdom:

The prevailing colour of the fittings is dark green, relieved with gold ornaments; while the ventilation is obtained by means of low stained glass windows; but at night the House is lighted with eight massive chandeliers in bronze, suspended from the ceiling by a thick crimson rope…The roof is low and heavy, and upon first entering, the chamber has an excessively sombre aspect, but this feeling gradually subsides as the eye becomes familiarised to the place. Nevertheless there is a great deficiency of light in the day time, and if something could be done to remedy this defect the house wold be as comfortable as it is handsome.

Queen Victoria at the prorogation of parliament three years later | Colored News | 11 August 1855

Sadly, one of the Palace of Westminster’s architects, Augustus Pugin, suffered a mental breakdown later that same month. After being confined to Bedlam, a savage twist of irony, for the institution was then situated opposite St George’s Cathedral in Southwark, one of the buildings he designed, Pugin was removed home and died in September 1852.

The Sun (London) mourns the premature death of the talented architect, and his ‘great national work, the Palace of Westminster.’ It anticipates that ‘future ages will connect the name of Pugin with…that gigantic reproduction of a long-forgotten style of indigenous architecture.’

New Titles
Years Added
Sun (London) 1801-1803, 1805-1835, 1837-1838, 1840, 1849, 1851-1864, 1868
Colored News 1855
Updated Titles

This week we have updated four of our existing titles.

You can learn more about each of the titles we add to every week by clicking on their names. On each paper’s title page, you can read a FREE sample issue, learn more about our current holdings, and our plans for digitisation.

Years Added
Lady’s Own Paper 1847-1854
Newcastle Daily Chronicle 1868, 1871, 1898
Cork Examiner 1912
Liverpool Standard and General Commercial Advertiser 1851-1854

Register now and explore the Archive

You can keep up to date with all the latest additions by visiting the recently added page.  You can even look ahead to see what we’re going to add tomorrow.


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